Moonflower Murders: A Novel (Paperback)
Moonflower Murders follows in the footsteps of Horowitz's earlier Magpie Murders. Both are books within books (ala a play within a play). They're long, complicated stories with two casts of characters and sets of clues to keep track of. But that's the intriguing part of the Horowitz genre: He plays with words and impressions to create puzzles within puzzles and challenges the detective (and the reader) to find the crossover.
The protagonist of Moonflower Murders is Susan Ryeland, the publisher who solved the Magpie Murders crimes. The new book picks up right where the old one left off, Susan having sailed into the sunset to run a hotel in Crete with her Greek lover. She's asked to return to England to find a missing hotel manager in a hotel where a grisly murder has occurred eight years prior. She can only do so by re-reading a book by her most prominent author who, like Horowitz, is a master of word tangles and clues.
At first, I was put off by Susan's casual approach to investigating a missing person and then a murder. Later, however, she grasped the impact of her interference in the lives of many people and did feel responsibility and regret. It's nice when a character can grow in such a recognizable way. Maybe Susan Ryeland will be back for another outing.
Anthony Horowitz is well-known as the force behind Foyle's War and Midsomer Murders, two of my favorite television series. He can really tell a story.— Customer Mary
November 2020 Indie Next List
“Anthony Horowitz has done it again! With Moonflower Murders, he has crafted another superlative, page-turning, cunning, book-within-a-book mystery chock full of clues (and red herrings), featuring the appealing former editor Susan Ryeland from Magpie Murders. Terrifically engaging, smart, and fun, this book is practically impossible to put down. Don’t miss it!”
— Tova Beiser, Brown University Bookstore, Providence, RI
Featuring his famous literary detective Atticus Pund and Susan Ryeland, hero of the worldwide bestseller Magpie Murders, a brilliantly complex literary thriller with echoes of Agatha Christie from New York Times bestselling author Anthony Horowitz.
Retired publisher Susan Ryeland is living the good life. She is running a small hotel on a Greek island with her long-term boyfriend Andreas. It should be everything she's always wanted. But is it? She's exhausted with the responsibilities of making everything work on an island where nothing ever does, and truth be told she's beginning to miss London.
And then the Trehearnes come to stay. The strange and mysterious story they tell, about an unfortunate murder that took place on the same day and in the same hotel in which their daughter was married—a picturesque inn on the Suffolk coast named Farlingaye Hall—fascinates Susan and piques her editor’s instincts.
One of her former writers, the late Alan Conway, author of the fictional Magpie Murders, knew the murder victim—an advertising executive named Frank Parris—and once visited Farlingaye Hall. Conway based the third book in his detective series, Atticus Pund Takes the Cake, on that very crime.
The Trehearne’s, daughter, Cecily, read Conway’s mystery and believed the book proves that the man convicted of Parris’s murder—a Romanian immigrant who was the hotel’s handyman—is innocent. When the Trehearnes reveal that Cecily is now missing, Susan knows that she must return to England and find out what really happened.
Brilliantly clever, relentlessly suspenseful, full of twists that will keep readers guessing with each revelation and clue, Moonflower Murders is a deviously dark take on vintage English crime fiction from one of its greatest masterminds, Anthony Horowitz.
About the Author
ANTHONY HOROWITZ is the author of the US bestselling Magpie Murders and The Word is Murder, and one of the most prolific and successful writers in the English language; he may have committed more (fictional) murders than any other living author. His novel Trigger Mortis features original material from Ian Fleming. His most recent Sherlock Holmes novel, Moriarty, is a reader favorite; and his bestselling Alex Rider series for young adults has sold more than 19 million copies worldwide. As a TV screenwriter, he created both Midsomer Murders and the BAFTA-winning Foyle’s War on PBS. Horowitz regularly contributes to a wide variety of national newspapers and magazines, and in January 2014 was awarded an OBE.
“Moonflower Murders showcases Horowitz’s full battalion of strengths: the whiplash plotting, the leather-smooth prose, the bold energy… and above all, the bright spark of joy that ignites the best fiction—the joy of a storyteller finding brave new ways to dazzle his audience. Sophisticated, literate novels aren’t supposed to be so much fun.” — A. J. Finn, author of The Woman in the Window